K-Lo Bazar: A Mother-Daughter Duo Committed to a Better Future

The beauty of entrepreneurship stems from the many different reasons why people decide to become entrepreneurs in the first place. For many, entrepreneurship is the key to liberty and independence, for Maribel and her daughter Karen, entrepreneurship meant the opportunity to keep a dream alive.  


K-Lo Bazar is a special event store located in Elkhart, IN that provides clothing and religious items for any type of special occasion (Baptisms, First Communions, Confirmations, Quinceañeras, weddings and even prom). When asked to describe her store, Maribel (co-founder of K-Lo Bazar) did so by saying, "we are a store that strives to provide as much as we can for any given special occasion all in one place. If there is something our clients are looking for and we don't have it in-store, we will do everything in our power to get it for them". 

K-Lo Bazar was founded in August 2014 with an incredibly strong motive, a young woman's dream to go to college and a mother's desire to do whatever it took to make that happen. 

"After Karen graduated from high school, my husband and I knew she had to attend university but we also knew we would not be able to afford it with the wages we were making at the time. I knew I needed to do more to help my daughter attend college so I decided to go all in and open up a store" -Maribel



Maribel has been a salesperson her whole life. As a young girl, she would make toys from scratch and sell them to whoever she could and whoever would buy them. As an adult woman, the items she sold changed but her drive and desire to create a better life for her family remained untouched. 

"Deep inside, I always wanted to open us a business, to create something my family and I could call our own but I was always afraid. My daughter's dream to go to college made me lose that fear of failure as I feared not being able to help my daughter fulfill her dream so much more" -Maribel

Before opening up the retail store K-Lo Bazar, Maribel was already selling some of the items which are not staples of the business (such as dresses, flower arrangements, and jewelry. When Maribel decided to go all in however, her sales were simply scaled. 

Entrepreneurship is often misinterpreted by many as a lucrative occupation due to the flexibility of "being one's own boss". What is not so commonly understood however are the amazing odds that are stacked against anyone who may even dare call themselves an entrepreneur. For Maribel and her family, these odds did not matter, "we had no option than to succeed" Maribel said, "we could not let the dream of our eldest daughter fade away just like that". 

Almost 4 years after the inauguration of K-Lo Bazar, both the business and the dream soar proudly. K-Lo Bazar is growing steadily and Karen's dream of obtaining a college education is being lived out. 

"It has not been easy being a full-time college student and aspiring entrepreneur at the same time. It's taken a lot of sacrifice by everyone in my family and for that I am enternally grateful. The success of K-Lo Bazar and the success that I may acquire in the future will be fully credited to the unity of my family" -Karen

A young woman with a natural entrepreneurial spirit and sharp a business sense, Karen acknowledges that her parents poured everything into her dream and now works endlessly to not only fulfill that dream but to also repay her parent's graciousness by making K-Lo Bazar more successful than anyone ever imagined. 

"As I continue on the path toward completing my undergraduate business education, there is no greater motivation than my family due to the sacrifices that they've made for me", said Karen. K-Lo Bazar is completely family owned and operated and every single member of the family has a stake in the organization, from Karen parents to her 9-year-old little sister. Though Karen and Maribel, the mother-daughter duo, are often seen as the faces of the company, K-Lo Bazar is a business built by the work and sacrifice of an entire family.  

"We've built a business together as a family. We take great pride in saying 'this is our business', and that is what propels us to always strive to get better. We now know that the success of our business depends on the limits that we put on ourselves and for that reason, we put no boundaries to our ambition" -Karen. 

K-Lo Bazar began with a dream, a young girl's dream to obtain a college education and a family's relentless drive to make that a reality. Today, that dream continues to fuel the efforts of Karen and her family as Karen is on track to graduate from Indiana University South Bend in the coming years. "When I graduate college, it's going to be an accomplishment for the entire family. My parents have risked everything for this dream so when I graduate, we will all be graduating together", said Karen.

The mother-daughter duo grows stronger day by day. For Karen and her mother Maribel, every new day presents a new opportunity and every day that goes by only adds to the knowledge, wisdom, and experience acquired by the two ladies. What started as a young girl's dream to attend and graduate from college has evolved into a dream of a better life for an entire family and the many generations to come. 

"After graduation, my dream is continue to grow the business without any limitations. My family has sacrificed everything for my dream and now I will return the favor by working endlessly to create a better life for all of us" -Karen

There are so many great success stories when it comes to entrepreneurship, the most exciting part about this one is that it has only just begun. 



K-Lo Bazar Information

  • Address: 319 W Lusher Ave, Elkhart, IN 46517

  • Phone Number: 574-214-4029


The Latino Entrepreneur Story Writing Project is sponsored by the Center for Intercultural and International Education at Goshen College. 

Sergio Ortiz